Velasquez Returning? Bailey to DL? Phillies Brass Ponders Pitching Moves

MINNEAPOLIS — Phillies officials are pondering a couple pitching/roster moves as the team wraps up a three-game series against the Minnesota Twins and gets ready to head to San Francisco for a weekend series against the Giants.

The decisions hinge on health evaluations of reliever Andrew Bailey and starter Vince Velasquez.

Bailey felt some cramping in his left hamstring while covering first base in Wednesday night’s game. He limped off the field. Athletic trainer Shawn Fcasni put Bailey through a series of tests on the field before Thursday’s game. The team will continue to evaluate him. If he has to miss more than a couple of days, the team will likely place in him on the disabled list and add a reliever to an already taxed unit.

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Velasquez has been on the disabled list with a mild strain of his right biceps. He made a rehab start at Double A Reading on Wednesday and proved his health with a fastball that rose above 95 mph.

“The reports were good,” manager Pete Mackanin said. “He was free and easy, throwing all his pitches.”

Team officials are consulting with athletic trainers who have supervised Velasquez's rehab to determine if he is ready to return to the big-league rotation or needs another minor-league start. If Velasquez is ready to go, he could start Monday in Arizona and replace struggling Adam Morgan.

Morgan gave up 11 hits in Wednesday night’s 6-5 loss to the Twins. He could not protect a 5-2 lead in the fifth inning as his ERA rose to 6.55 in 11 starts. After the game, Mackanin did not hide his dissatisfaction with Morgan.

“I’m not happy with his performance,” Mackanin said. “He hasn’t been pitching well.”

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